As someone who strongly prefers savory flavors to sweet, Caesar salad has been the Romeo to my salad-loving Juliette since the very first bite. Salty, cheesy, lemon-y, bright, crunchy, and slightly fishy, it’s an amalgamation of flavors + textures that go almost suspiciously well together. I have some personal requirements for what makes a good Caesar salad, though. I like my lemon strong and punchy, I like my dressing a bit fishy, and I also need a smoky element to it.
I discovered this last one after having a Caesar salad in Los Angeles that had grilled their romaine over coals before incorporating it into the salad, which added a smoky complexity to the dish that made my mouth water and my head explode. Since it’s kind of a pain to grill romaine on the reg, I wanted a way to bring that smokiness to the salad without having to break out the grill a few times a month. So, I started incorporating smoked paprika into the Caesar dressing, and HOLY MACKEREL. It adds the *perfect* touch of smokiness, plus the delightful mild pepper flavor of paprika that we all know and love.
This salad also gets a smoky kick from charred lemons, which are used in the dressing and also served with the salad for optional extra lemon-y drizzling. The key to charring lemons is to do so on a well-seasoned cast iron skillet, and to char them just until the edges touching the pan are a nice deep brown with a golden hue, you *don’t* want the lemons to actually turn black. It helps to use a spatula to lift them up every so often as they’re searing away to make sure you don’t accidentally burn them.
FYI, the Caesar salad recipe below is a vegetarian base, with an option to add in a cup of cooked chopped chicken or roasted chickpeas if you want a bit more protein. I have my go-to recipe for roasted chickpeas below from my cheeseboard post, too—they’re an awesome way to boost the protein levels of any salad and make it a bit more filling. Plus, chickpeas have lots of fiber and nutrients and are generally very good for you (and taste awesome!) Hope you enjoy it, my friends!
Caesar Salad with Homemade Croutons
This delicious fresh take on a Caesar salad involves a touch of smokiness from charred lemon and a bit of smoked paprika, along with all the other traditional goodness like parmesan cheese, garlic, and anchovies.
- 1 lemon cut in half
- 6 cloves garlic coarsely chopped
- 1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan
- 3 tablespoons good mayonnaise
- 1-2 teaspoons minced anchovy filets (I like it more anchovy-y, if you prefer less anchovy flavor just do 1 teaspoon)
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1/4 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon flake kosher sea salt
- 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
- 4 1/2 cups french bread torn into roughly 1 to 2-inch pieces and left out overnight to get stale
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 lemon quartered
- 1 head romaine lettuce torn or cut into bite-size pieces
- 1/3 cup freshly shaved parmesan cheese
- Caesar dressing see above
- Homemade croutons see above
- 1 cup chopped cooked chicken or roasted chickpeas (see below recipe) optional
- Flake sea salt garnish
- Freshly cracked black pepper garnish
- Smoked paprika garnish
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Mix together the salt, paprika, and pepper in a small bowl and set aside. In a large bowl, toss together the bread and olive oil until coated. Then toss the salt mixture with the bread until evenly distributed. Spread them out over 2 baking sheets and bake in the oven until deeply golden, about 25 min.
Heat a seasoned cast iron pan over medium high heat. Sear the halved lemon, cut side facing down, until a warm brown around the edges, but *not* black, about 5 minutes. Repeat this with the quartered lemon under the 'Caesar Salad' ingredient list. Set the seared quartered lemon aside for serving.
Squeeze the juice from one of the halved charred lemons into a blender or food processor (1/2 of a lemon makes about 2 tablespoons of juice). Add the garlic, parmesan, mayonnaise, anchovy, black pepper, smoked paprika, and Worcestershire sauce and blend at low speed.
If using a blender, remove the small circle in the center of the cap. While the blender pr food processor is running at low speed, add the olive oil in a thin continuous drizzle.
Once all the olive oil is added, increase the speed to medium and blend until smooth. Turn the blender off, taste, and add more lemon from the other charred lemon half if desired.
Toss the lettuce with the parmesan, Caesar dressing, and croutons. If you want some protein, feel free to mix in 1 cup of chopped cooked chicken or roasted chickpeas. Serve with lemon wedges for extra juicing. Garnish with a pinch of flake sea salt, cracked black pepper, and smoked paprika to taste.
- 1 13-ounce jar of chickpeas (drained and rinsed)
- 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
- 3/4 teaspoon flake sea salt
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/4 teaspoom ground chipotle (for spicy) or smoked paprika (for mild)
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
In a medium bowl, toss together the chickpeas, olive oil, salt, garlic powder, and chipotle chili or paprika until the chickpeas are coated in the mixture.
Spread the chickpeas out evenly on a baking sheet and place it in the oven.
Roast until the chickpeas are deeply golden and some have split, about 15 to 20 minutes, stirring them on the pan halfway through.
The least demanding and most flavorful Caesar dressing.. it makes me resemble a STAR each time I make it and to be sure a lot of left-overs dressing for another plate of mixed greens. When it is a bit too thick I include a tablespoon or so of separated water. On occasion, contingent upon the olive oil I use (now and again Tuscan has somewhat of a chomp) I will include the most modest piece of nectar. This time I additionally included a sprinkle of Worcester sauce per the remarks and I should state it is the best form I have made yet. . The bread garnishes ROCK the planet… I’ll concede I include a touch of extra margarine with the Olive oil and have gotten numerous a wedding proposition dependent on the essence of these croutons…./they can change the world. Appreciate!
Hi Anna! Thank you so much for your thoughtful comment! I am so glad that you ended up making the cesar salad! I am SUCH a fan of cesar salad and love playing around with the recipes as well! I am so glad that you liked the addition of Worcestershire, it really brings out the flavors doesn’t it? It was SO delicious and of course always need to make extra dressing I completely agree! Thank you thank you!
Lovely. Thank you so much.
Thank you Zoe! I am so glad that you enjoyed it! I am still obsessed with these charred lemons, love it!
If you think so, then you are fine with the reptiles!). Pet mice are beautiful and mice are not reptiles but mammals. I spent the field and forest of mice in my house. Cats catch them, I put them on. Thank you.
Such a clever opinion and not so hard to do. I had some time this week, so I really hope to achieve those. I bet they’re just delicious. https://www.wikiproficiency.com/
I’m not so happy you decided to make Caesar salad! The Caesar salad is SO good and I enjoy experimenting with the ingredients! I, therefore, am glad that the people of Worcester have been admirably adjoined; doesn’t it really bring out the flavors?https://www.ghostwritingproficiency.com/ It was so good, and I agree that you always make extra clothes. Thank you very much!
Of course, I usually need to make extra dressing since it was SO good. I concur entirely! Thank you very much!
Pet mice are gorgeous, and they are mammals, not reptiles. https://www.goldmindthoughts.com/life-coaching I stayed inside my home throughout the mouse field and woodland. I put them on; cats catch them. Many thanks
Wikipedia writers for hire to get your biography, research article, or Wikipedia page creation. Our experts are ready to deliver 100% accurate, original content that is written according to the guidelines and policies of Wikipedia.
KBook Publishing was started with one aim in mind: to bring forward creative stories from talented writers who are denied the chance of getting traditionally published. KBP provides professional editing, formatting, paperback and hardcover, cover design, and marketing for your books to make your publishing process easy.
I’ve perused all kinds of topics on your channel, and I always thoroughly enjoy all of your content.
this is my favorite food https://donkey-kong.io
We provides Writing Services such as seo article writing, blog writing for websites, web content writing, marketing material content, research articles, proof reading services, infographic content, social media content, press releases, product descriptions, copywriting and much more.
Marketplace of premade book covers design, where indie authors can quickly obtain the eye-catching book artwork that will frame their next best-seller.
Let's Be Penpals!
from my homestead to your inbox